MARTIN AND JO DEBANKS – CAPTAIN & CHEF TEAM
Martin and Jo have been employed in the Yachting Industry globally for the past 25 years.
Their early years saw them running high end diving and adventure charters in such far flung places as Africa and the Middle East. From there a move to Mexico and the Sea of Cortez saw charters for the rich and famous added to their resume’s. They eventually settled in to a yacht with a Global itinerary specializing in Game Fishing and Diving. After over a decade and two circumnavigations they decided to make Cairns and the Great Barrier Reef their home bringing along their enviable skill set and experience to help provide charters of the highest calibre aboard MY Spirit.
Their love of the ocean is evident in all they do, being so passionate in all water sports enables them to easily cater for the most discerning and adventurous of guests whilst still producing the luxury and service expected.
Cordon Bleu trained Chef Jo’s love of cooking materialized early in life thanks to her mother’s input, herself a lifelong chef. It was a natural progression to combine her love of food with her love of the sea. Alongside Captain Martin, with their oceans of experience and handpicked well qualified crew you know you are in safe capable hands.
JOEL ROCHFORD – FIRST OFFICER
Ever since Joel was a young boy, growing up on the Central Coast in New South Wales, he has been around boats. With his father being a Navy Officer, it seemed the maritime industry was in Joel’s blood.
Seven years of yachting saw him extensively navigating the Mediterranean and United Arab Emirates on various highly successful charter vessels before being part of a build team to launch a new yacht out of the USA. Following his time spent in America, Joel decided to move back to Australia, where he made Cairns his home.
Joel is dedicated to making guests feel comfortable and ensuring that they enjoy their time on board, and by combining this and his passion for boats, water sports and spear fishing, it makes working on M/Y Spirit the perfect fit. He has now been on board for over 2 years.
CLAYTON KERR – CHIEF ENGINEER
Growing up in Rockhampton, the Beef capital of Australia, Claytons journey through life was set out to continue working as a stockman in North Western Queensland for his earlier years. However, after discovering a love of engines and all things engineering he moved to Cairns to become a trade qualified heavy diesel technician with the local caterpillar dealer. This saw him through 9 years with Caterpillar as a field service technician gaining extensive knowledge and skills with anything and everything from heavy mining equipment to luxury Super Yachts in the South Pacific. Over the years a natural love for the ocean and interest of the maritime engineering industry developed, driving Clayton to gain his engineers certificates and pursue a career on luxury yachts. His knowledge of motor yacht Spirit began in 2016 refit period where he conducted both main engine overhauls, and eventually continued on to become the Chief Engineer.
MYLES PRESSLEY – DECKHAND
Born in country New South Wales, Myles grew up on a hobby farm. At the age of nineteen he established an early career as a trade qualified Structural Landscaper running a small business with a team of up to 6 people.
After a holiday to Cairns Myles realised his natural calling to the ocean and made a personal commitment to chase his dream to work on Superyachts.
Shortly after, in 2018 he had acquired a Deckhand job on a luxury yacht cruising through the Whitsunday Islands for a season and later heading to Sydney for a summer season on the same vessel.
After twelve months in the industry Myles joins Spirit, super enthusiastic and dedicated, to continue his journey in Yachting, further learning and many adventures.
Caitlin’s first experience of travelling by sea was at the age of 17 when she joined an exhilarating ten-day voyage down the east coast of Australia on a Tall Ship, the ‘Young Endeavour’. Following this experience, she pursued sailing as a leisure activity and joined a yacht club involved in ocean racing.
A career in the Super Yacht industry was always on the horizon and in 2016 Caitlin experienced her first Stewardess position which was on a 60-metre motor yacht based out of France. Caitlin joined MY Spirit in 2017 as Deck/ Stewardess which led to taking on the Chief Stewardess role. We waved Bon Voyage to her after 1 year as she embarked on a new adventure in the Mediterranean where she worked as Chief Stewardess on a 45 metre sail yacht. She then continued her adventures and took a year off to travel South America. We welcome Caitlin back onto MY Spirit, returning with her experience, high level of service and much endeared enthusiasm.
You will find Caitlin smiling, bubbly and always happy to help. She enjoys exchanging tales or adventures and remote places and looks forward to contributing to your memorable experience while on Spirit.
MELISSA COWAN – SECOND STEWARDESS
Melissa has always been around the ocean and shared a love for boating from the young age of 12 when she obtained her NSW Junior Boat Licence to start learning the ropes on her family speedboat around South Sydney waters.
Following this passion for the ocean, she relocated to the Whitsundays where she worked on a number of Sailing Yachts, exploring the Islands and the Great Barrier Reef. Melissa loves all things water sports and outdoor activities including wakeboarding, running and yoga.
She now joins us as our Second Stewardess on board Spirit and is excited to expand her knowledge of the Marine Industry and make sure you have the most amazing holiday.
If you’d like to book with us, or just have questions, contact us by phone or email!